Hope Richard had a good birthday this week, the pictures looked so fun! Did you like the card? I know the best present ever is having me as family... :)
This week was a harder one. We were still working with Charlene, helping her to clean out her trailer and oh my goodness... gross. It actually didn't have as many roaches and the one we cleaned in Albany, but it was still disgusting. We cleaned on Tuesday and Wednesday and Charlene will not throw anything away. She has catalogs that are years old and things that just do not matter at all... And we were finding a lot of anti-mormon stuff, and just a lot of pamphlets and things from other religions. With all of that and the super old catalogs and stuff we put them in a separate bag and then snuck them out to our car to throw away at our house... :o It really was for her own good! We felt like we were disposing of a body though, so that was bad. When we were getting ready to leave Tuesday Charlene had this old, toy guitar that was just busted. Totally ruined, unusable. So Sister Richardson asked her if we could throw it away and Charlene got really mad and said no, no one has the right to take/throw away any of her stuff. She said it belonged to her and when she was able to replace it she might get rid of it. Oh we felt so bad because we had already snuck three big bags of stuff out and put by the car.... yikes. Really though, everything we took was so infested and nasty, it needed to be taken. The majority of things in there needs to be taken.... but we were able to do that on Tuesday and then again on Wednesday when we were on exchanges and I had Sister Madsen with me.
Charlene didn't come to church yesterday, and she left us a questionable voicemail where we thought she may have been antied. We suspect two people... But we went to see her after church and she didn't seem totally normal, but she talked to us for a minute and we thought things were fine. Then she called us Sunday evening and left a voicemail saying she could no longer continue studying with us, something to do with her daughter, and that she would let us know when she could again. Dropped. :( Our most solid investigator, dropped once again. We have been having a really rough time!
And to make that worse, this was supposed to be the best weekend ever because Brandy from Waynesboro got baptized on Saturday! President Cottle gave me permission to call her at her baptism and talk to her since I couldn't be there in person so I texted the elders there on Friday and said I would be calling, then I texted Satuday during the service because I didn't want to call and interrupt, then I eventually did call because they weren't calling me back. They didn't answer and then they called me not too much longer after and said Brandy had left 15 minutes ago. I wanted to CRY! I honestly cannot believe they did that. It's been a hard week and I have been looking forward to her baptism and getting to talk to her for weeks! So I asked the elder if he would have her call me on Sunday after church and he said yes and then guess what? He didn't. I texted him during their church to remind him too. I think people just enjoy breaking my heart. So the wonderful news of the week is that Brandy, one of the most special people to me in the entire world got baptized on Saturday, and the sad news is that I didn't even get to talk to her. All I can do is put that behind me now though. But those elders are so on my list. Can't trust men to do anything ;)
We met this guy this week named Greg, he is kin to Joseph Smith! Cool huh?! He's Pentecostal I think but he told us he had this awesome book with real photographs of Joseph Smith and about his life that he was going to dig out for us to see, and he did! We've been teaching him more about Joseph Smith and about the gospel and the Spirit has been very strong during them. He's older and in pain, but he'll always kneel with us on his wooden porch when we pray. We were so excited to have found him and we taught him twice and then we were going back Saturday and we got a call from him and he's been out of work for a long time but he just got a job assignment that is going to take him away for a couple months. Dang it! I know that's a good thing for him, but we got of the phone and were like "AHH Satan!!!!!" Every promising person we start teaching gets taken away from us for some reason or another! I've really seen how Satan works on the missionaries as much as the investigators because he's done good this week... I've gotten discouraged but Sister Richardson is so good at never letting that show for her, so I'm working on that. I know there are so many miracles to be seen, and that this is just a little bump. Miracles will happen, and we will find those who are prepared to hear our message.
The great part in all of this is that when we do get down, God knows how to make us feel better and He will always do something to make us laugh and lift our spirits. Sister Richardson and I are both really good at serving each other (not to brag) and this morning she was trying to make me hot chocolate and toast before I was finished getting ready and we were both going to study but I walked in the kitchen and she had literally made the hot chocolate explode all over in the microwave and was trying to clean it up before I saw. She was like "no, no, you just go in and start studying and I'll be in in a minute" hahaha. But I saw the chocolate mess and I just started laughing. And then the toast popped up totally burnt. Hahaha. It honestly was so great, a humorous way to start off the day following a sad Sunday. We were excited to see how the rest of today panned out after burning all we could before 8am. Definitley a picture moment, I'll send pics of the hot chocolate mess :) Haha. Today has been great. Just makes me laugh that she is a great cook and she burned hot chocolate in the microwave, but she is a good enough person to be able to laugh at herself :) We so enjoy this. Haha
Oh I almost forgot! We're teaching a lady named Amanda and she has five kids, the oldest is 9. They all came to church yesterday! Sister R had to speak so it was just Amanda and I trying to control all the kids during sacrament meeting--oh my goodness what a nightmare. A challenge for sure. I can't even name all that happened but I decided I'm good on waiting longer for motherhood--that and my husband better not have a calling or job that takes him away from me a lot! :) But one of the members afterwards told me he could tell I would be a great mom some day so that made me feel good. Exciting sacrament meeting for sure...
A couple quotes I've heard the past two Sundays that I wanted to share!
"People die in bed, and so does ambition."
"A righteous woman (or person) has more influence today than she (or he) ever would have in a more tranquil world."
Great insights to keep in mind! I've known since I got to this area, but this is a small town and there is sooo much drama it's insane. There are pros and cons to it, but I never want to live in a small town. Ever. Way too much gossip and drama and crazy people and everyone knows everything--or they think they do. Sister Richardson and I just have to stop sometimes and say that we can't believe this is our life.... haha. But overall things are good and I know they are about to turn great once again!
I love you guys and I hope you have the most wonderful week! Stay warm, I love you!!!
Look how big this dog is. When it got up on it's back legs it reached over the fence. I about died.
Funny ad we got in the mail
This is Greg, the guy that is kin to Joseph Smith! We'll definitely start teaching him again when he gets back in town
Exchanges with Sister Madsen and Sister Taylor! Sister Madsen was companions with my trainer, Sister Turner and she also went to school with Moroni and Mikayla-cool! It really is such a small world. (of course we went to Wendys again, gotta take advantage!)
The elders were at Wendys too and one of them likes the vanilla frosty, which we think is an abomination. We added a little something to the Word of Wisdom pamphlet to give to one of their investigators. Fun surprise for them! ;)
Our recent convert, Cindy, using my headlamp to read True to the Faith with us :)